Receiving the Riches of Glory – 2 Corinthians 8:9

Dr. James Montgomery Boice, the late pastor of Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia, captures the essence of Advent: “Jesus descended from the peak of glory to this lowly position in order that He might raise us from our lowly position to His glory.” The significance of the incarnation is not only that we know the … Continue reading Receiving the Riches of Glory – 2 Corinthians 8:9

Five Keys to Authentic Community (Romans 16:1-16)

We all desperately need community. This hit me again with great force recently as I was watching the movie "The Count of Monte Cristo" starting James Caviezel as Edmond Dantes. Abbe Faria, aka the Priest, becomes a lifeline to the weary Dantes during his stay at the prison, Chateau d'if. Abbe is a great scholar … Continue reading Five Keys to Authentic Community (Romans 16:1-16)

Sad Hearts Sing – The Walk to Emmaus

Prayer:  O God, open the eyes of our hearts to see You  for who you are today – the risen Savior who conquers all of our enemies.  Renovate our unbelieving hearts so that they burn with devotion and love for our risen Savior and Lord. I don't know about you, but  I still get chills … Continue reading Sad Hearts Sing – The Walk to Emmaus

Compassion at Christmas Time – A Word from Henri Nouwen

“Let us not underestimate how hard it is to be compassionate. Compassion is hard because it requires the inner disposition to go with others to a place where they are weak, vulnerable, lonely, and broken. But this is not our spontaneous response to suffering. What we desire most is to do away with suffering by … Continue reading Compassion at Christmas Time – A Word from Henri Nouwen

The Normal Christian Life Involves Suffering

Though many in the evangelical church in America today will tell you differently, the normal Christian life involves suffering and afflictions. The apostles galvanized the first century disciples with this reality check: "Through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom" (Acts 14:22). When we are called to face this reality personally, let us not be … Continue reading The Normal Christian Life Involves Suffering

A Psalm for Good Friday – The One Whose Back is Plowed

Psalm 129 Psalm 129 is one of the Psalms of Ascent. It is a very fitting Psalm for Good Friday. Suffering is one notable feature of our journey of faith that we’d rather not talk about and certainly not experience. In fact, many religions say that it’s an illusion. Even for many who profess faith … Continue reading A Psalm for Good Friday – The One Whose Back is Plowed

Acts 14 – The Habits of the Heart of Gospel People

Devotional Guide - Habits of the Heart of Gospel People The church is called to teach people how to talk, how to act, how to fight, how to love, how to see the world in a peculiar way - a Christlike way. “The role of the church is to cultivate a people who can risk … Continue reading Acts 14 – The Habits of the Heart of Gospel People

The Marks of a Missional Church – Acts 13

At our Vespers service this week, we delved into and prayed concertedly through Acts 13 for our church. Acts 13 is a transition chapter in Dr. Luke's letter. The gospel begins to go to the nations. It chronicles the first stages of Paul's first missionary journey. In the process, it highlights the distinguishing marks of … Continue reading The Marks of a Missional Church – Acts 13

Pain that Prompts Worship – Part Two

Let’s be honest. Our earthly pilgrimage often involves pain. Genesis 47:1-12 does not fit our notion of a good testimony. In this passage, Jacob tells Pharaoh that his life has been short and sour. That isn’t a very good case for Christianity is it? The thrust of much evangelism today is that trusting Christ and … Continue reading Pain that Prompts Worship – Part Two

The Pain that Prompts Our Worship – The Life of Jacob

Steven Curtis Chapman has released more than 20 records. He’s won five grammys and seven “Artist of the Year” dove awards. He is certainly recognized as one of the finest artists in the Christian music industry. However, none of that mattered a couple of years ago when his five year old daughter, Maria, died after … Continue reading The Pain that Prompts Our Worship – The Life of Jacob